Just because Edmonton is landlocked, doesn’t mean we need to feel that way. Great seafood can still be accessible. The Common’s sister restaurant, Grandin Fish ’N’ Chips, is promising a port to prairie concept. Expect crispy battered fish, lots of sides, killer tartar sauce, and seafood, seafood, seafood.Only two doors south from 109th Street’s The Common, Edmonton’s newest fish and chips place has occupied the space since September last year. Eager anticipation was finally met with a completed restaurant last month. It’s a stunner: tastefully nautical-themed with a custom tattoo-style wallpaper, accents of rope, metal, rust and wood. Seating is a combination of tables and counter height tables, the space seating 30-or so. A large chalkboard menu greets you at the entrance and an exposed kitchen keeps things casual. Counter ordering is available until dinner time with full service after 5pm. The decor and space is extremely well thought out. Gorgeous!
Starting off with drinks, you can order a rum-centric cocktail (1.5oz, $9), draught, bottles & cans, or wine. Kid-friendly non-alcoholic drinks are also available, including a Shirley Temple!As you would assume, the fish and chips are the star of the show. You can them classic (fried), gluten-free (fried in a separate fryer), or pan-fried. Since opening, I’ve had a chance to try both the Cod & Chips and the Basa & Chips. If you don’t know what kind of fish suits your tastes, ask your server. I ordered the cod and chips for my first visit, a classic when it comes to fish and chips. Both the cod and haddock are firm white fish, whereas basa is softer and more delicate. I ordered the basa on my next visit and absolutely loved how it fell apart. I haven’t gone back since, I’m a basa-gal! Grandin also offers Fish of the Day, selections thus far have been snapper and sole.
The batter is thin, light, and crispy. The best parts are the edges of the piece of fish, nice bubbling action. The fish itself is left unseasoned and that’s where table side salt and vinegar is your best friend. You can add an additional piece of fish (any kind) to your order for $5. The fries are seasoned nicely but aren’t very noteworthy. It’s a challenge to make standout fries. So long as you can get over the fact that you won’t actually be having “fish and chips”, you substitute them for any other side for $2.
Other sides include: Butter & Herb Baby Potatoes, Fried Brussel Sprouts Bubble & Squeak, Steamed Asparagus, Green Beans, Snaps Peas & Broccoli, Coleslaw, Loaded Mashed Potatoes, or Mushy Peas. Throw in a Homemade Cheddar Biscuit & Butter and you’ve got yourself a winner. Housemade tartar sauce is included but you could always add on others for an extra $1.50: Béarnaise Sauce, Green Tomato Chimichurri, Sweet Chili, Garlic & Herbed Butter, Curry Sauce, or Jalapeño Mayo. I absolutely love Grandin’s tartar sauce – a perfect balance of tang from capers and acidity from lemon juice. So, so, so good. My only suggestion to Grandin Fish ’N’ Chips: sell these by the jar please!
If you’re in a bigger group, make sure you add some feature dishes to your meal. I loved the Smoked Fish Fritters, perfect to share and deliciously smoky. The Fried Escargots and Tartar is also good alternative and definitely one to try if escargot is new to you. The Seafood Chowder and Cheddar Biscuit is perfect for a cold day and for those who don’t particularly want the traditional fish and chips. It’s definitely a meal in itself, loaded with all kinds of seafood and potatoes. I’m looking forward to another big meal at Grandin, the P.E.I Mussels pulling my heartstrings. I’m also looking forward to trying the Salad Nicoise: seared saku tuna, hard boiled egg, green beans, potatoes on top of greens.
Don’t forget dessert! I recommend the Banoffee Pie: toffee, banana, and whipped cream. Delicious! The Blancmange, a milk, lemon and cinnamon pudding sounds interesting but it fell flat compared to all else on the menu. Fin’s Select Meats & Seafood is Grandin’s primary seafood supplier, and alongside Rob Tryon from Effing Seafoods, you can be sure that you’re getting some fantastic seafood. Lunch can pack a full house very quickly but Grandin Fish ’N’ Chips also does takeaway. I’m looking forward to having fish and chips at the Legislature grounds come summer. Otherwise, a fast, casual dinner at Grandin Fish ’N’ Chips is the perfect way to feel like you’re on the coast. Grandin Fish ’N’ Chips
9902 109 Street NW